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What you saw in my segments of The Office Show was a mixture of old PowerPoint and new PowerPoint 2010 features.
Changing design to a new look and color is as easy as it looks in the video. In PowerPoint 2007 and above, you can preview changes as you mouse over the icons. You can change them quickly if you were caught in Tina and Laura’s scenario, but often the formatting will be off on some styles. However, you can change the theme color very quickly with no ill effect so no two presentations ever have to look the same. There are at least 20 color changes for each theme design.
See this introduction to themes for PowerPoint 2007.
When working with images (and we have over a hundred thousand free images at Office.com) ...
PowerPoint is one of the most effective business tools ever invented, but we all know PowerPoint presentations can go horribly wrong. That's why we created this episode of "The Office Show," to help you use the great design capabilities of PowerPoint, and thus avoid those dreaded presentation sleepfests.
And we know that sometimes you've got no time to produce a professional slide deck, while with other projects you want to spend a lot of time to get it right. The Office Show has some tips for both situations.
Microsoft design guru March Rogers starts the show with the basic principles of design. Good design is absolutely crucial to communicating well with any audience, and thinking about these principles can really help you make your points more effective. Office.com's Doug Thomas, Mr. Office Casual, demonstrates some new PowerPoint features, like background removal and combine shapes - that help put those principles into action. And to inspire you further, we've created a 150-page flipbook animation built entirely in PowerPoint.
And we've got what we call our Quick and Dirty Trick: which is pretty simple. If you don't have time to start from scratch, we've got a huge number of professionally designed templates that get you a great head start. Most of you know about templates already, but you may not know that we've worked with professionals to create things like 3D text effects and animations, that you can download and use for free. The 3D text effect template on the show was created by PowerPoint MVP Julie Terberg. There are many more example slide effects templates on Office.com, many of which are brand-new and designed for use with PowerPoint 2010. Go check them out, it can really fire up your imagination to see what's possible.
Of course, this is just a snapshot; if you've got ideas and tips you want to share about how to make great presentations, feel free to log a comment and let everyone know. We'd love to hear from you, and we'd love to hear more about what you think of the show. The folks at Office.com created this in partnership with our friends at Microsoft's Channel 9, where you can find even more videos about Office.
-- Doug Kim and Tina Wood Summerford,
Office Show producers
PowerPivot for Excel is an Excel 2010 add-in that allows users to pull data from multiple sources, mash them up, and then build reports using regular pivot tables. You can even share these reports with others in Microsoft SharePoint (via PowerPivot for SharePoint). In this demo from Channel 9, Julie Strauss, Program Manager for Microsoft SQL Server Analysis Services, shows just how easy it is to get a better view into your data. Watch for the part where she sorts 100 million rows of data instantly. 100 million rows. Not a typo. You can download the PowerPivot add-in for free at the Microsoft Download Center. More info at powerpivot.com.
When planning a holiday event, face down inner panic by splitting tasks into three parts: Collaborate, Publicize and Personalize. This Office Show shows you how our intrepid hosts use those concepts to throw a last-minute Office party, avoid a meltdown and actually relax. Watch and read the full post to find out how.
I had a lot of fun shooting the first episode of the Office Show. I never thought that while being a designer at Microsoft I'd end up playing with a blow-torch, but I'm not complaining.
In the show we talked about some of the great design features in PowerPoint. There's a host of powerful tools built into PowerPoint 2010 that make it really easy to create great looking presentations. Of course we wanted to stretch PowerPoint to show it off. In my segment of the show we worked with traditional animation techniques - called cel animation - that have been used by Disney and other hand drawn animation houses for nearly a hundred years. That allowed us to reuse background elements from frame to frame while redrawing elements in the foreground - woohoo for copy and paste!
A very talented colleague of mine - Ally Hood - hand drew every line of every shape inside PowerPoint using the built-in drawing tools. From there she animated certain foreground elements within some slides, while setting the transition (a cut) between slides to less than 1/5th of a second. At that speed still images start to blur together and give the illusion of movement - just like that stick figure you drew in the corner of your high school math book - it's Ok, we all did it
The result of about 40 hours work was 150 custom created slides that took us through all four seasons in just 30 seconds. If you haven't seen it yet, you really should check the show out!
While you might not have time to do your own hand-drawn animation, there are a number of great, easy ways to add motion to PowerPoint. Here's more info on a few of them:
People do astonishing things with PowerPoint, but author Jennifer Egan has brought PowerPoint into a whole new level: literature. She's written a chapter of her latest novel, "A Visit From the Goon Squad," (Knopf) entirely in PowerPoint.
You read that correctly. What she's done is frankly amazing. SmartArt charts show the relationships of the characters. Graphs show their conflict and the passion that both binds and divides them. A rich, multilayered story unfolds.
When I spoke with her recently, I was so inspired by her passion for the program that I asked her to come up with 10 tips for storytelling in PowerPoint. You don't have to be a novelist: Her tips apply to anyone using PowerPoint to convey complicated ideas. Here's her list:
1. Read as many PowerPoint presentations as possible, ideally on an array of different topics. Copy and save individual slides that jump out as graphically interesting. Look at them outside the context of the presentations they came from and think about how and why they're successful at storytelling.
2. Write directly into PowerPoint, rather than sketching out ideas and trying to import them into PowerPoint later on.
3. Work in black and white initially; structure is what matters most, and color can be distracting early on.
4. Start by jotting down elements of a dramatic moment as bullet points on an individual slide. Add or subtract elements until you have a collection on one slide that feels organically connected.
5. Study this collection of bullet points and ask yourself HOW they're connected. What relationship do they describe -- a cycle? A chain of events? A hierarchy? Think also about which elements are primary. Are there two main ideas and three smaller ideas that are subsets of those main ideas?
Working with data in Excel 2010 can be a beautiful thing, but getting your data into Excel can be a huge chore. PowerPivot, a free add-in from Microsoft, makes it easy to pull in data from multiple sources and merge it all into one workbook. It's like supercharging your spreadsheets with live data.
In this excerpt from The Office Show, Oliver Chiu demonstrates some of PowerPivot's incredible features:
So what is Office 365 and how can it help your small business? This Office Show answers those questions with a special two-part episode, wherein our heroines Laura and Tina start a business from scratch with Office 365. Like many of you, they're strapped for resources and face some nasty competition. Office 365 is their key to surviving and thriving. And stay tuned, we'll post Part II soon. For key links to more info, check out the full post.
In this video, Office.com writer Ron Owens unveils his favorite new features in Word 2010 and some tips for making the most of them. Learn how to customize your workspace, simplify your printing experience, co-author documents, and use the Navigation Pane and paste preview. For more Office 2010 videos, check out The Office Blog on Channel 9.
Some folks look at Outlook as another source of info overload, but here's the thing: Outlook 2010 and the Outlook Social Connector are the most powerful tools you have for mastering all your information streams. Check out the video to see how, and learn more on the full post...